In fact, it seems like so much of the video production community struggle with the issue of pricing when they get a meeting with that dream client. So I’ve asked 17 experts in the video production and indie filmmaking communities to chime in with their thoughts on pricing. If nothing else, it’s a great jumping off point in you’re struggling with how to handle your video production pricing. I think these responses will help to answer lots of questions that you might have and I hope it stands as something of a guiding post for our community. Are they efficient or will we waste a lot of time re-working the boards, pre-production and in post or do they know what they want?
2.What is my interest level in the job and does it push my body of work forward in terms of doing something new or relevant? World-renowned Editor and educator and member of both the Directors Guild of America and the Producer’s Guild of America. The first thing I look at with regards to pricing is the type or scale of any given project.
Naturally, a commercial spot for a large corporation will have a higher budget than a music video for an independent artist, so identifying the overall scope of any given project sets me off in the right direction. If my client has any sort of concept in mind, even if it’s rough, that will likely dictate the cost to a large degree.
The creative direction will also determine the crew size which of course is another pivotal factor. After understanding the scale of production and any creative requirements, I will have a solid idea of what our cost will be on a daily basis — for both production and post.
The next step is to assess how many days the production will require and multiply the cost per day accordingly, while also adding in some contingency costs. Look-up the numbers of the company, how many employees they have and how their current marketing is going.
The amount of people they have employed tells something about how much they want to grow and that they like help with their growth. But if they already spend much of their budget on marketing, you have a bigger chance of getting on their train.
You’ve done your homework and have fixed prices, so take out your price table and create a price quote right in front of him. Because you’re open with your prices and making the estimate together with the client, you will have a stronger bond with them. I first took this idea to heart after reading a wonderful article by Pavel Kounine posted in PetaPixel online and it has cemented the way I think about setting my price. A lot of wedding professionals seek to defend their prices by sharing audit-like cost breakdowns with their clients but this certainly isn’t the best decision. I totally agree with this article and it has helped shape my wedding cinematography package prices. People starting out should notice this, people watch your films and then ask how much you’re charging. This is wonderful to hear and gives you plenty of courage to ask for that extra $100-200 next time a couple enquires about your services.
While this is helpful when you’re starting out, you might want to careful about heeding this advice. You’re talking to a new couple and once you tell them what you charge for your wedding packages, they immediately tell you that you’re way out of their budget and even go further to say that nobody should be charging that amount for wedding cinematography. You could apologize and ask what their budget is and maybe even drop your price to accommodate their minuscule asking price. Point 1 is obvious: I look at the time I’m going to need to invest in making this project the best it can be. Point 2 is a little bit more complex and focuses on the specific opportunities that are on offer for me getting involved in this project.
It also looks at any potential ‘opportunity costs’ that I might face by choosing this project over another worthy project that might clash with it.
Narrowing it down to just working with small business owners for this example, maybe the biggest challenge I’ve had with working out performance-based deals is getting paid.
The psychology of small business owners is such that they view the businesses’ money as their money.
In other words, there is little difference to them whether the money is being spent on their groceries, or on improving their company’s marketing. No matter how fantastic the ROI (Return on Investment) is, if they’re paying you on a monthly retainer, they might get tired of paying you every month. Be careful to avoid what has been hilariously termed as The Prostitute’s Dilemma in business circles. And without trying to overload you with ideas, one final important point: raise your prices.
The three most important factors I consider when pricing a video production job are time on location, time editing, and overhead costs. Time editing is always an estimate, because you never really know how long something will take to edit until you get into it (especially if the client has a lot of revisions). I used to track my hours and adjust my final bill accordingly, but clients hated the uncertainty, and I hated having to watch the clock all the time, so I switched to a project rate for editing. Now, I tell the client how much I would charge to deliver what they want, and that’s what they pay. Overhead costs are things like crew costs, studio fees, meals, travel & hotel costs, equipment rental, etc.
It’s also extremely important to understand exactly what your costs are going to be, when you work with outside vendors like talent agencies and voiceover studios. Except that the fee from the voiceover studio went up by almost $8,000 because of national usage, and I was the guy who had to pay them! I was able to get the client to pay for some of the overage, but since it was really my mistake for not getting an accurate number in the first place, I still wound up losing money on that project.
When in doubt, remember one thing: you never want to have to go back and ask for more money! If you’re starting out as a new filmmaker, you might need to charge less than a typical rate.
Once you come up with a rate that you are comfortable with (calculating the cost of running your business, taxes, and how much you need to survive and thrive), it’s an easy fall back number to tell clients. For example, if I know that my day rate is $400 for shooting video, then I can easily tell a client that it will cost $400 per day, no matter how many days I work or how long I work per day. Whenever I work on a video project, I always remind myself that I have the expertise and experience that warrants a premium price — and I follow it up with amazing work that gets me hired over and over. Will it be a simple real estate or event video or a major corporate or commercial production? Since my approach will always be based on the end-product required, that greatly determines how much of a production budget is necessary.
Can I shoot with my in-house gear or do I need to rent more lights, gear and a bigger camera + extra bodies to operate it? Will I need to shoot aerials and file the necessary paperwork for my commercial 333 exemption?

It really is a fact-finding process long before you start working on the figures — including how serious the potential client is about the production or are they just fishing for ballpark figures. If we write the script or are helping client to revise script, I try to estimate additional hours for that. We try to let them know as quickly as possible, such as on a shoot when things are running late and we have to schedule another session. As you said, pricing is a complex process that involves, in my opinion, figuring out the details of what you are creating and how prior to giving a quote out. I have set prices for each type of crew members, equipment and specific services, so when pricing, I try to figure out how much of these I need. Basically my recipe for pricing is trying to figure out as closely as possible the creative direction prior to sending a quote, and then using my personal experience to estimate what it will take to make this happen in terms of resources.
Or is it a full blown commercial where we ne ed grips, PA, make up artists etc…for 5 days.
Sending video examples to my client during the quote process, showing visual examples and discussing at length what they have in mind ensures that we are on the same page creatively and that I’ll be able to include the necessary items in my quote. It’s also a great way to start establishing a relationship and trust that is important for the sales process. At the end of the day, this is not a super strict process and I’ll adapt to the client. Being associate with a big star can pay off big time in the future as you bid for future jobs. I moved away from editing and more into color grading and post supervision because the time vs. If the people involved in the project are fun, creative and easy going, I’m much more likely to cut a deal.
Documentary filmmaker at PBS Digital Studios series Indie Alaska and Owner of Alaska Video Shooter.
So essentially, all of our videos are a collection of minidocs about people, representing their companies, universities, or their nonprofit organizations. Understand the relationship between production and time; it will answer most logistical questions.
I hope this discussion has been helpful for you in determing your video production pricing. If you have any pricing suggestions and ideas of your own, we’d love to read them in the comments below!
If you have a video production business and you want to be added to this article, drop me a message, too! Also, we’d really appreciate you using the share buttons to get this post seen by your friends and colleagues. Then there are some areas that retailers trip over that lead to poor results for their entire business. Pricing is a sticky subject for many retailers, mainly because of the huge impact it has on a buyer’s purchase decision.
While this is a good way to keep your mind at ease about repricing, it is very far from sustainable.
Sometimes retailers are either unaware of the fluctuating prices around them or sometimes they  refuse to be flexible. That means you’ll have to find ways to differentiate your brand from your competitors to justify a premium price. Frequent discounts cheapen your brand, and also condition your shoppers to only shop at your store during sales. Wiser provides a complete suite of solutions to give retailers, brands, and manufacturers the edge to stay both competitive and most importantly, profitable.Want to learn more about what Wiser can do for your business? Brian Smyth is a content writer at Wiser, a dynamic pricing and merchandising engine for online retailers. Two massive earthquakes struck Japan’s Kyushu island late last week, killing dozens, destroying buildings, and displacing thousands of local residents from their homes. Due to parts shortages, Toyota released a written statement noting it will suspend vehicle assembly-line production in stages at more than a dozen different plants until parts availability is normalized. Affected lines include those at the Tsutsumi plant, which produces the popular Toyota Prius hybrid, and the Tahara plant, which produces a number of Lexus models, as well as those at other facilities producing vehicles for the Asian market. As a result of the Great East Japan Earthquake of 2011 and the subsequent tsunami that followed, many Japanese vehicle manufacturers and automotive suppliers have worked together to create a strong network for parts following a natural disaster. If you manage this site and have a question about why the site is not available, please contact us directly.
Video production pricing is a complex subject and there are many angles to come at it from.
I take all of the above and then formulate a price that allows me to make a profit based on the time I’ll put in, the gear we’ll need (and cost), and the chance that things will go smoothly. Always plan, and price for, changes — even when the client swears that this version is absolutely, positively final.
Never lose your focus that your job is to help your clients communicate, not to showcase your technical chops.
How much time will be required in all three phases of production: pre-, shoot, and post production. Are the post needs clear and can I afford to do the job without losing my shirt and putting in lots of unanticipated time and energy delivering a cut that works?
This is something very important if you want to be taken serious, whether your prices are cheap or expensive. The first thing to figure that out is by doing your homework before your first meeting with the client. Then the second thing is you meet up with the client and try to sell them something which you think might be just above their budget. Don’t lower your price, but leave off some extra lights or swap that fancy RED camera with a DSLR.
Get a picture of how much it will effectively cost and how much time it will take and communicate that to the client so he also understands. I kept raising my prices little by little because people were telling me to do so after seeing my videos.
To skip this step under-values your work and will make owning a business miserable for you. You want to be high enough that you make money, and low enough that you get in with clients who have a ton of work for you. They will focus on the dollar amount going out, and the amount coming in will hardly matter. Most business people describe the first time they learnt to really see their own value and charge what they’re worth as being a life-changing experience. While my dayrate covers my gear and me, larger productions might require me to hire a dozen other people, rent gear that I don’t own, and incur other expenses.
In particular, if you don’t have a portfolio or any connections in your industry, you might need to do free work to build up relationships and a killer portfolio. For larger budget videos we will add some of those options plus a fee for producer and sometimes separate fee for director. Mitch, our staff editor, either meets with the client or looks at their requirements and creates a quote in a range, based on his experience with similar projects.

I try to be clear in the initial contract that change of scope results in a different budget.
It also allows us to know quite precisely how much time a project will take to shoot and edit, based on:1. And knowing fairly well how long it will take to shoot one minidoc featuring one person, we can then multiply those hours to fit the scope of the project we’re pricing out.
If you take a big price cut without thinking it through, you’ll resent the client, and yourself. This is an important issue for our industry and in getting the message out there, we can help each other’s businesses! It’s necessary to pump keywords into your product descriptions, but the natural flow of writing does not always include them. According to a study by Marketing Charts, 56% of shoppers view price as the primary influence on the purchase decision. From your brand value to your bottom line, these are the five pitfalls you want to avoid when pricing your products. Repricing takes time and resources, so many figure a static price will be enough to win customers over from competitor sites. Your competitors are using your static price as a benchmark for their own repricing, meaning they will always be undercutting you, or even pricing above you. If you cannot deliver a luxurious shopping experience, then you cannot attribute a high price to an improved brand experience. When you set a repricing rule to constantly reprice below one of your competitors, you will hit your minimum price threshold. But it brings up the previously stated problem: you win the sale, but you lose your margins.
If you have old inventory that is just taking up space in your warehouse, heavily discounting the items can help move it on out. They will spot a pattern in your discounts and understand that there’s no need to shop at your store if everything just goes on sale in a matter of weeks.
Your dynamic pricing tool takes a ton into consideration before changing your products’ prices. By setting up price guards, you can make sure your prices never exceed or drop below certain price thresholds to ensure your brand value is respected.
He holds a BS in business with a concentration in marketing from San Francisco State University. Nevertheless, Automotive News reports that Toyota may see its operating profit for the current quarter fall by nearly $277 million. Meanwhile, production at Nissan’s Kyushu plant was temporarily halted due to earthquake-related damage. Your job is not to sell on price, but on quality, story-telling and meeting the client’s needs better than anyone else. People could technically get married for a couple hundred dollars but chose to spend thousands on their guests to attend this celebration. If you shoot this video you will probably find yourself feeling under-valued and possibly might reduce your effort in retaliation. And then once you’re valuable to them, then you can discuss price really for the first time. That is, you’re paid based on, for example, how many sales your video adds to the bottom line of the company you’re working for. If you don’t know what reasonable rates are, we recommend researching freelance platforms (Craigslist, Upwork, etc.) to see what people around the world and in your area are charging. Nothing should be overlooked when selling online, especially if you plan on reaching a broad audience.
The results of this lead to poor search engine rankings, which can hinder your marketing efforts. They’re executed with good intentions, but the final results are more harmful than beneficial. This leaves many retailers stressing about their prices, and this stress sometimes leads to poor decisions.
A lot of the time retailers choose to avoid frequent price changes and instead take what might be considered the easy road and slash their prices remarkably low.
It defeats the whole point of a business, and leaves you with no money to reinvest back into your company to help you grow.
That’s right, retailers who reprice often test their price changes to measure the corresponding demand. Unless you put in that work, you can’t let your price alone dictate your brand value. You can’t simply introduce yourself as a luxury brand with your price, you have to work your way up and go above and beyond retail standards. Many choose to price below that threshold and cut into their profits, and other retailers follow. It has a mind of its own, and understands that simple price cuts are not always enough to win over customers. Dynamic pricing can also be designed to mark down slow moving inventory, that way the prices drop only on items that need it. You can make sure you move inventory, obtain your desired margins, and build strong value all because your tool’s self-learning algorithm can take hundreds of factors into consideration to make sure your price is always right.
Analyzing projects from this perspective allows you to confidently and competitively price your work. It’ll take me a while to go through this properly and learn what I can from you guys! We also invite you to call us at 413-324-1130 to discuss your project with a video creation specialist.
Unfortunately, there are quite a few aspects that are sometimes forgotten in the planning process. If they can price above you and still win sales, they aren’t even going to consider pricing below you. By constantly testing results of your price changes, an algorithm finds the sweet spot in your pricing that consumers will like the most. From that point, we know how many days it will take to shoot, and a pretty good estimate for hours it will take to edit. It’s just as helpful as a salesperson in-store, and a great way to personalize the experience. When you compete solely on price, you lose focus on other important aspects of your business.

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